Heather Wolpert-Gawron

Viewing: ELA

DARPA to create metacognitively aware robots

DARPA to create metacognitively aware robots

By on February 24, 2009

The Register reports that DARPA (Defense Advance Research Projects Agency) is currently researching how to create robots that are “like some self-aware computer systems capable of “meta-reasoning” and “introspection…”  Their goal is to “Provide machines with an ability to reason

Am I So Past My Prime?

Am I So Past My Prime?

By on February 21, 2009

Somehow, and maybe I’m reading into it here, I feel a little written off already.  Education Week is reporting that some districts are pondering the possibility of “front-loading” new teacher salaries, increasing their compensation earlier in their career to aid

Here’s why test scores shouldn’t be the only criteria…

Here’s why test scores shouldn’t be the only criteria…

By on February 18, 2009

OK, so my first period’s “Advanced” group went up 40% between their 1st district assessment and their 2nd. Another period went up 37%.  Even my Honors class went from 81% Advanced to 97% Advanced, with only 1 student found in

My New Interactive Whiteboard…an update

My New Interactive Whiteboard…an update

By on January 28, 2009

OK, you know when you get a new puppy and you love it and you couldn’t live without it and then you find out it has hip dysplasia?   That’s a little of what my relationship is like with my

Metacognitive Poetry: Writing About Thinking While Writing Lesson

Metacognitive Poetry: Writing About Thinking While Writing Lesson

By on January 23, 2009

Here’s a great metacognitive lesson that integrates poetry.  Or is it a poetry lesson that is metacognitive?  (Shrug)  I believe that good writing and great structure can be taught through mimicking great authors.  Using this philosophy as my guide, my

Skills vs. Strategies: UCI Writing Project Challenge

Skills vs. Strategies: UCI Writing Project Challenge

By on January 16, 2009

The UCI Writers Project has monthly meetings for its alumni where we discuss certain topics, bringing our field studies and expertise into the conversation.  Last night we tackled an issue related to developing a common language: Skills vs. Strategies. Many

Sesame Street: Word on the Street

Sesame Street: Word on the Street

By on January 12, 2009

OK, so as I write this I’m watching Sesame Street with my 2 year old.  This big-feathered muppet just announced that the Word on the Street is, get this…Struggle.  I kid you not.  I guess times are tough even on

Is Cursive Really a 21st Century Skill or is it History?

Is Cursive Really a 21st Century Skill or is it History?

By on January 5, 2009

Look, we all agree, that our job is to prepare our students for their future by teaching 21st Century skills, right?  Well, then why is cursive even a continuing debate?   We can no longer afford to spend time on

CUE update of my sessions

CUE update of my sessions

By on December 16, 2008

So I will be presenting again at CUE this year.  My session, “Podcasting with 70 Middle Schoolers – RU Crazy?!”  has received some great comments in the past and as I’ve tweaked the class, I’ve updated my presentation as well.

Book Review: The Hunger Games

Book Review: The Hunger Games

By on December 9, 2008

Kids killin’ kids for TV viewing pleasure? Great tween reading fun! I just finished The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins . It took me awhile to get a hold of it because the minute I brought it into my classroom

Budget Cut Victim – Textbook Adoption

Budget Cut Victim – Textbook Adoption

By on December 5, 2008

We just got word that we will not have our scheduled textbook adoption for ELA this year as planned.  I have to admit, it is disappointing.  I mean, yes it meant I was going to be out of the classroom

XWikiWorkspaces

XWikiWorkspaces

By on December 1, 2008

I thought I’d share a little of what I’m doing in the classroom with XWikiWorkspaces.  So, going off the frustrating fact that my district is blog-o-phobic, I was wracking my brain in how to teach internet literacy while still catering

CUE 2009

CUE 2009

By on November 16, 2008

I have two sessions that I will be presenting at CUE in March this year.  I thought I’d share a little of what I sent to them to give you a little preview of what I’m going to be talking

Obama and World of Warcraft

Obama and World of Warcraft

By on November 11, 2008

Where were you when?  It’s a question I asked my readers and my classes the day after the election, and you know what answer I heard the most often?  Ironforge.

Hola, soy redesignated…

Hola, soy redesignated…

By on November 7, 2008

So, please, somebody tell me how this scenario is best for the child: Recently, I received a student, a full quarter into the school year, from our ELD classes.  That’s not the problem as much as the fact that she

Grammar Snafu and Dances with the Stars

Grammar Snafu and Dances with the Stars

By on November 3, 2008

OK, I admit it.  I’m a Dances with the Stars Fan.  Although I do believe that the series has jumped the shark with the group hip-hop number two weeks ago (did we really need to see Cloris Leachman in short-shorts?),

Book Review (sorta): Thoughts on Neal Shusterman’s The Schwa Was Here

Book Review (sorta): Thoughts on Neal Shusterman’s The Schwa Was Here

By on October 26, 2008

So I just finished reading Neal Shusterman’s The Schwa Was Here.  I know, I know.  For all you librarians out there, you’re probably saying: “What?  It took you THIS long to read it?  Jeesh, what kind of tweenteacher are you?” 

Book Review: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Book Review: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

By on October 20, 2008

You know when you enjoy a book so much you begin to slow down towards the end just to make the sweetness last?  Well, Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book is one of those.  NG writes with a rhythm in his

When it works, it’s amazing!

When it works, it’s amazing!

By on October 3, 2008

I’m referring, of course, to my new Interactive Whiteboard. I think I’m going to name my second child Promethean.

The Excitement Graph: Plot and Word Choice

The Excitement Graph: Plot and Word Choice

By on October 2, 2008

Every year, I do this activity when teaching Narrative Plot.  I’ve used it from 3rd grade to 12th grade.  I learned a version of it first in 1993 at a UCLA Extension class on “Teaching Reading to Secondary Students” and